Going to NFL Super Bowl at today’s prices?

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William Shakespeare should have written “to go or not to go.” Then I could really say “that is the question” to all my readers, considering going to Met Life Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ and paying the Super Bowl price?

If I had a free ticket on the 50 yard line I would put it up for sale!

I did have the good fortune to attend a Super Bowl and boy was it Super to say the least. But even though it was a very special game, I would never do it again, especially at the cost today. It’s just not for the average fan.

It was back in 1980 and I was a young and crazy guy with no worries. That was when Vegas was still Vegas. My friend from Pittsburgh called me and said he was coming out for the Super Bowl between the Steelers and the Los Angeles Rams, which was going to be played at the Rose Bowl. He had a ticket for me on the 50 and wanted me to go. Heck, yeah.

First they were going to stop in Vegas to bet the game and then head off to La La land and meet up with a friend of ours who lived there. I got them rooms at the Stardust for the night and the next day pulled all of our available cash and bet every cent we could on the Steelers -11.

We’re on a plane to LA to meet up with our friend who always had a plan. Sometimes it wasn’t a good plan but this one sounded great. We would drive down to this mall by his house and they had special buses for $15 that would take us to the Rose Bowl and bring us back to the mall after the game without fighting the traffic.

We were all in.

The next day we get up early, get to the mall and the busses are running. All was fine. The bus takes us right in and the driver tells us to remember where he drops us off as that is where he will pick us up after the game. The problem was by then we had already started to party and no one was paying attention.

There is a record crowd of 103,985 in the stands and we were on the 50 sitting right in front of Lynn Swann’s sister or cousin. The seats were fine and cost us only $200 a ticket. It was a great game with the Steelers pulling it out in the second half beating the Rams 21-6 for a final score of 31-19 and we were already making plans for our winnings.

One thing I do remember was the books got caught in the middle and lost their you know what as the game opened at -10 and closed at -12. Oh well.

Now we are happy and head for our bus to get the car and back to our friend’s house for a party he is having. We get to the parking lot and there are at least 5,000 buses with their motors running sitting there. We search for at least an hour and can’t find our bus. A disaster!

My friend who lived there told us to wait and he would hitch a ride back to the mall, come back and get us. After an hour at least, he tells us that while walking a car pulled over with Steubenville people. All was well except we didn’t get back to his house until midnight so I would say better not to go. Stay home, it’s cheaper.

Ten people on that Steelers team are in the Hall of Fame, Chuck Noll, the head coach, Terry Bradshaw, Mel Blount, Joe Greene, Jack Ham, Franco Harris, Jack Lambert, John Stallworth, Swann and Mike Webster. Topping that off was Art Rooney doing the coin toss.

A 30 second Super Bowl add was only $220,000. Now, it’s around $4 million. And the NFL is a nonprofit organization!

So how about some bets? The Broncos went 6-2 SU on the road and 5-3 ATS but their defense was the name of the game later in the season and ranked fifth against the rush. Seattle was almost identical at 6-2 SU/ATS – all done with the best defense in the league.

The Broncos have been hearing nothing but how the Seahawk defense will stop them, how good their defense against the rush is. You can believe Denver will step up and Wilson will need to do it in the air.

Sometimes things get in my way of handicapping a game like: I am not a fan of Pete Carroll but I am of Manning who has been there and done that. It would seem he will find a way to get this win if there’s time to pass the ball. That’s the key – getting time. On the surface, total is the play in what looks to be a real humdinger of a Super Bowl. UNDER 47.

Props look better than trying to nail the winner of the game.

I always like to bet there will be a two point conversion and that is 4-to-1. The first score of the game will be a field goal or safety at +120 and the same bet on the last score at +130.

Play on Wes Walker to score a TD at +150 and total runners for Denver to rush the ball (OVER 3½ +150). All we may need is for Manning to rush out of desperation one time to get that bet in and he will be doing that a few times.

It looks like the game has settled solidly at -2½ with the total 47 and that is pasted all over the city.

My advice is play some fun cards and prop bets at your favorite book, attend one of the big parties if that is your thing, or enjoy the comfort of your home with some family and friends with some pizza and wings. Remember, it’s only a game.

Richard Saber, a former director of race and sports at the famed Stardust book, is GamingToday’s horse racing and sports handicapper.  Follow Richard on Twitter @SabesBet. Contact Richard at [email protected].

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